boot/bios set up problems

  cheeky 22:04 26 May 2004

Hi All,

I have a dell 8100 inspiron laptop and used to get the options to go into set up when itstarted. The black screen use to say press f4 or what ever to go into the set up (bios menu. Obviously I cant remeber.

I need to do this as I want to re-install windows and need to change the boot from settings to boot from CD

Now it just boots straight into windows without giving me any options? I have tried every key but it still just goes straight into the logon screen. I have tried starting in safe mode but cant. I have no floppy drive on this machine and wondered if anyone can help? Thanks if you can..

  Cook2 22:20 26 May 2004

Switch on and start tapping (or hold down) the Delete key, this will put you into the BIOS hwere you can change your first boot device to your CD.

  GrahamP 22:23 26 May 2004

click here says it's F2. Just keep tapping it every second after power on. You might find that restarting allows you to see more of the boot process and hit it at the right time, usually after the memory count

  woodchip 22:32 26 May 2004
  Charence 22:41 26 May 2004

When PC boots up, as soon as the DELL logo appears, hit the F2 key. Try pressing it a few times. If Windows starts to load, you're key tap was too late. Press CTRL+ALT+DEL when Windows is loading to restart and TRY AGAIN.


  cheeky 23:33 26 May 2004

WSorry it a 8500 by the way, MMm, got worse, tried all that, seems like the screens not working until xp comes up, its just blank, then the logon screen appears.

So, tried re-install xp from disk, got to the bit where it boots down and back up and just blank, so now its completely crashed. It won't boot into the old windows and wont boot from the CD rom !

On the install it seemed active (the hard disk was reading) but the screen was just blank! Could I have turned off something by hitting the wrong F keys or something? stopping me from seeing the boot up screen and dell logo

  keith-236785 23:47 26 May 2004

check that the screen power off switch isn't stuck, (small button near one of the screen hinges). if that is stuck then the screen will be turned off. Try pressing the button a few times to see if it helps.

you could try putting a blank cd in the drive, then it might throw up a message about "press any key to boot from cd".

  cheeky 01:37 27 May 2004

thanks so far people but cant get anything from it! now i am really stuck. ! help ! can i reset the bios like i can on my main pc by clearing the cmos? any thoughts welcome..

  woodchip 11:49 27 May 2004

Not without opening the case if you cannot get in to BIOS then it means removing the back then remove the Mobo battery

  Graham ® 12:07 27 May 2004

Laptops usually have a FTN key, use this with the Function keys 1 - 12. One of them will switch the video to an external monitor. If you have accidentally done that, the screen will be blank. Have another play to get it back.

  cheeky 18:44 27 May 2004

Thanks again guys, I will have another play tomorrow and try all the options again, whats made it worse it that it is now half way through a new install and seems to have wiped the files from the boot sector so it wont boot into the old version of windows either.
I will have a play tomorrow beofre I start taking it apart! I will give you all an update on my progress after that, again thanks for your help and comments

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